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Daily Dose: Finding the FBI a New Home

The Washington Post reports that the J. Edgar Hoover building is in need of repair. Since 9/11, the FBI has grown considerably, and has outgrown the current facilities. The Post reported that prior to the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the FBI had 9,700 headquarter staffers working at seven locations, today the FBI has about 17,300 employees working at 40 sites across the country, with 22 facilities in Washington. The Post reports:

The J. Edgar Hoover Building, which occupies an entire block at a choice Pennsylvania Ave. intersection in downtown Washington, is “aging” and “deteriorating” and in need of serious repairs, the Government Accountability Office said Tuesday. The FBI, in coordination with the General Services Administration — which oversees most federal buildings — is reviewing a series of proposals to either renovate the building or relocate the agency to a new home — but none of the options come cheap, according to the report.

The GAO report provides some solutions, which do you think are the best and why? The follow section is directly from the Washington Post, you can view the article in its entirety here.

1.) Stay in its current location: Keeping the current Hoover Building doesn’t do anything to solve the space or security issues, GAO said, and staying put would require the FBI to continue leasing space. The cost of doing so is likely to climb higher in the coming years.

2.) Renovate the Hoover Building and consolidate leases: Renovations and new leases wouldn’t completely solve the space and security problems, but repairs to the current headquarters would allow for upgrades and make it more energy efficient. It would take up to 14 years to complete renovations, at a cost of at least $1.7 billion, GAO said.

3.) Demolish the Hoover Building and rebuild at the same site: Security concerns would remain, but tearing Hoover down and constructing a new building would solve the space concerns. But agency operations would likely remain dispersed across dozens of locations. Estimates suggest it would take at least nine years to complete the project at a cost of at least $850 million.

4.) Build a new headquarters at a new location: This option would solve space and security concerns and ideally would be located on about 50 acres of land accessible to D.C.-are public transportation systems, GAO said. In 2010, the FBI and GSA estimated the project would take at least seven years and cost at least $1.2 billion — but those costs didn’t include how much it might cost for new furniture and equipment.

Are there any other potential solutions? Which one is the best?


“Daily Dose of the Washington Post” is a blog series created by GovLoop in partnership with The Washington Post. If you see great a story in the Post and want to ask a question around it, please send it to [email protected].

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Peter Sperry

Ok, between 1961 and 1969 (8 years), we wnet from almost dead stop to putting a man on the moon but now it takes 14 years to renovate a single building, 9 to demolish and rebuild or 7 to build elswhere?????? If our red tape and beauracracy has us tangled up that badly, then finding a location for the FBI is the least of our problems.